Here’s a thought experiment. Think of an SUV that immediately screams ‘that person has money.’ Land Rover? Nah, the various vehicles are getting close to each other and are more often seen on the roads. No, the statement SUV is and will always be the Mercedes G-Class. And it’s getting an upgrade in all the right spots.
It’s having its coming out party at the Detroit Auto Show, and you can see the iconic design remains, with some throwbacks to the vintage years. The new model saved most of the upgrades for the interior. It makes sense. The GLE had surpassed it when it comes to the bells and whistles. The G-Class needed a serious upgrade to keep with the times.
Taking a look inside, you can see the old physical dials are gone, replaced by two 12.3-inch touch screens arranged to form a widescreen panel. If you miss the physical dials, the default theme for the instrumentation replicates the look of analog dials.
One item that’s missing from the 2019 G-Class is the MBUX, Mercedes next-generation infotainment system. It was debuted at CES, but will likely make its debut in a new A-class model.
While it’s always been a box on wheels, the redesign does offer up more room on the inside thanks to a slightly longer and wider wheelbase. Passengers in the back will enjoy the extra 5.9 inches of additional legroom.
When does it go on sale? You have plenty of time to save up for the sticker shot. The 2019 4.0L turbocharged V8 G550 hits dealerships in Fall 2018. Pricing hasn’t been announced, but expect the $120,000 range as a start. No AMG models have been announced, but expectations are the mad scientists at AMG will be unleashed on the 2019 model.
The popularity of the G-Class has only grown, and it makes you wonder why Land Rover let its Defender model to automotive history. The market is there, and competition would benefit the consumer. For now, if you want the statement SUV, the 2019 Mercedes G-Class is your ticket.